Culture

Will the pope challenge Turkey on anti-Christian bias?

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Recently the Vatican confirmed that Pope Francis will travel to Turkey Nov. 28-30, the official purpose for which is largely ecumenical. He’ll visit Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople on the feast of St. Andrew, considered their patron in much the same way Catholics regard St. Peter as the first pope. The trip is also a way for Francis to express ... Read More »

North Korea executes members of Workers’ Party for watching South Korean soap operas

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Allies of Kim Jong-un’s ousted uncle among the victims of firing squads, some for watching South Korean television As many as 50 senior members of the North Korean government and military have been publicly executed so far this year, according to South Korea’s intelligence agency. The victims of the purges – which the National Intelligence Service believes are continuing – ... Read More »

A Child’s Drawings Preserved over the Centuries by “Magical Mud”

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In one region of Russia, the consistency of the earth is just right that manuscripts dating back centuries emerge almost perfectly preserved. Over the past year, more than 1,000 of these birch bark artifacts from the 11th to 14th centuries have been exhumed from the soil of Novgorod, adding to a growing archive of written history. David M. Herszenhorn recently explained this phenomenon in the ... Read More »

Cultural Workers in Turkey Prepare for Hunger Strike over Underemployment

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Cultural workers in Turkey are set to go on hunger strike in protest of their unemployment and its endangerment of the country’s vulnerable cultural resources. In reaction to the government’s broken promise to hire 50 workers among the thousands of unemployed cultural heritage professionals, the Association of Culture and Art Workers (Kültür Sanat Emekçileri Derneği, or KSED) is taking desperate measures. If ... Read More »

Can a Vacation Really Make You More Creative?

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Last week, we all got a little jealous when we heard that the creative agencyThinkPARALLAX gave its employees $1,500 each and an extra day off to travel the world in search of inspiration. “As owners of a creative agency, we’re always thinking about how to inspire creativity,” a blog post by the firm’s founders read. “Rather than send employees to ... Read More »

The Vatican Library’s Amazing Documents Are Finally Online

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The news: The Vatican Library is getting an e-upgrade. The official library of the Holy See is undertaking a massive digitization project designed to upload hundred of thousands of books and images from its physical archives into an online database. As Business Insider reports, nonprofit organization Digita Vaticana Oculus was founded in 2013 with the goal digitizing 80,000 manuscripts. That’s just ... Read More »

As a Briton, I hang my head in shame. We must return the Parthenon marbles

The marbles were created for the Parthenon in Athens

Now Amal Clooney has reignited the debate over the Parthenon’s crowning glory, it’s time we rectified a historic wrong. Reunite these ancient sculptures with their home Almost every day I take a walk around the Acropolis. “Around” is the operative word, because the Greeks have gone to great lengths to unite their Athenian antiquities with a pedestrian path. At the ... Read More »

These Are The Real Stories Behind Some Of The Most Beautiful Colors In Art

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Manganese black. Yellow ocher. Vermilion. Ultramarine. These pigments sound delicious. Their names are so sharp and elegant, it’s as if the terms emote more meaning than just color. We can smell logwood, taste cochineal, touch mummy brown. There is just something (quite scientifically) alluring about a perfectly saturated glob of paint or an electric mound of powdered hues, especially when ... Read More »

Pope Francis allows Sistine Chapel to be rented out for private corporate event

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Pope Francis has for the first time allowed the Sistine Chapel to be rented out for a private corporate event, with the proceeds to go to charities working with the poor and homeless. The concert, to be performed amid the splendour of Michelangelo’s frescoes on Saturday, will be attended by a select group of about 40 high-paying tourists who have ... Read More »